Could Sudbury get £6m for bus junction revamp?

An artist's impression of Sudbury's Hamilton Quarter from 2018

An artist's impression of Sudbury's Hamilton Quarter from 2018 - Credit: Carter Jonas

A £6million bid has been made to upgrade a key bus junction in Sudbury.

Babergh District and Suffolk County councils have requested £6.36million from the government’s Levelling Up fund for bus junction improvements around the Hamilton Road quarter.

That will then enable a council-led scheme for the revamp of the bus station there – one of the landmark projects in the Vision for Sudbury laid out in 2018.

News on whether it is successful should emerge in the Autumn Statement this year.

John Ward, leader of Babergh’s Conservative/Independent/Liberal Democrat administration, said the scheme had the backing from South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge.

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He continued: “The Levelling-up Fund provides a fantastic opportunity to bring forward a substantial site in the heart of Sudbury town centre and create more accessible and improved bus facilities to enhance passenger transport for the town, which will support our vision for Sudbury in creating a place where people want to live, work and visit.”

Babergh Conservative leader John Ward said it was a good step for the councils to take. Picture: SAR

Babergh District Council leader John Ward said the potential of funding was a 'fantastic opportunity' - Credit: Archant

The bid plans to improve the use of bus services because the bus station is away from the town centre.

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It will instead be replaced by on-street stops in the town centre, while junctions will be upgraded with bus priority measures to improve journey times.

A cash request had previously been made to the government’s Pinch Point fund, before that was axed and replaced with the Levelling Up Fund.

Richard Smith, Conservative cabinet member for economic development, transport strategy and waste at Suffolk County Council, said: “We support this bid from our partners at Babergh and look forward to hearing the outcome in due course.”

Richard Smith said the way county farms were run was important. Picture; SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL

Richard Smith, from Suffolk County Council, which is supporting the bid - Credit: Archant

Plans for the Hamilton Road quarter in the Vision for Prosperity published back in 2018 included the bus station and Borehamgate Centre.

They proposed a modern facility featuring homes, cinema, restaurants and other leisure and retail offerings.

However, changes to the redevelopment at Belle Vue Park when hopes of a hotel there fell through – which were loosely linked to the Hamilton Road refresh – and the impact of Covid-19 mean the scope of the Hamilton Road redevelopment could change.

The council said a revised masterplan will be shared publicly later this year.

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